After the whirlwind day we’d had on the 3rd, close to 30 hours of flying and very little sleep, we arrived in Florence in somewhat of a daze.
Our flight from Brisbane to Abu Dhabi went as well as any 14 hour flight can go, but fuelled by another 9 hours of flying to Rome and then to Florence, most of the excitement of finally reaching our destination was lost on us as our exhaustion overshadowed anything else.
Not to worry though, because after the first 12 hour sleep of my life, we woke to the sound of church bells ringing and the sight of soft, beautiful light spilling in through our bedroom window, and it really hit us. We were in Florence, Italy!
The first order of the day was coffee, followed by a delicious, leisurely breakfast. There’s something that feels so indulgent about taking as long as you want to enjoy breakfast, don’t you think? Cups of fresh Italian coffee were brewed and slowly sipped, hot toast was buttered and spread with sweet apricot jam and we talked about planning out our day ahead, but actually made no plans whatsoever. The perfect start to our time in Florence.
After breakfast, without much idea where we might end up, we set off for a day of wandering and exploring. We made our way first to the river and followed it along to the famously ancient bridged arched across it, Ponte Vecchio. Goldsmiths and jewellers are the only stores you’ll find on the bridge, but as we weren’t in the market for any more of that sort of thing, we instead stood among the throng of tourists gazing up and down the river at Florence beyond.
After Ponte Vecchio, we slowly made our way across the city to Florence’s cathedral, Santa Maria del Fiore, known more commonly as the Duomo. The famed Renaissance dome dominates the city’s skyline and Ty and I spent a great many hours during our time in Florence admiring it’s vast beauty. The decorative mix of green, white and pink marble adorning the exterior and the sheer size of the cathedral is mind-blowing, and try as I did, I was completely unable to capture it’s entirety on camera.
By the time we’d finished marvelling at the Duomo, it was most definitely time for a bite to eat. After a little more wandering, we found a tiny, hole-in-the-wall cafe and perched ourselves there for a good hour or so to enjoy lunch. The whole time we were in Italy, and later cruising the Meditterean, we made a point of ordering two different meals and sharing them. I ordered the tomato and basil bruschetta and Ty ordered a traditional panini sandwich. We lingered over lunch long enough to order more coffee, and finally with bellies full, we set off and lost ourselves to the cobblestone streets of the city.
I’m not sure how much time passed before we found our way back to our bed and breakfast, but by the time we did, it really was time to take cover. It had been a gloomy, overcast day and while I didn’t realise it at the time, the threat of rain was so heavy in the air it was almost wet. I could feel it on my skin and in my hair, and we really should have known a storm was brewing.
By the time we arrived back in our room, we had an hour or so to kill before our much anticipated dinner so we dropped off the camera, got changed and found a hair tie so I could finally pull my into a top knot and be done with the fluffy mess it had become (thanks humidity!). We’d been browsing the menus of every restaurant we passed all day and so, with our first and only plan for the day – where to return for dinner! – we wandered off with an umbrella in tow, eagerly anticipating the thunderstorm.
a low rumbling of thunder, the sky finally gave way to
the rain. Honestly, it couldn’t have been more dramatic or more romantic than if we’d planned the whole thing ourselves! Our cozy dinner of homemade spaghetti bolognaise, with a glass or two of red wine, couldn’t have been more perfect, but no meal in Italy is complete without gelato, so we treated ourselves to a scoop on the walk home.
After a truly perfect day in Florence, our Italian honeymoon was off to a good